The  government of President Robert Mugabe has impounded 60 000 copies
of the weekly newspaper The Zimbabwean, writes our correspondent.

Wilf Mbanga, the paper’s publisher, says the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA) has refused to release a consignment of 60 000 copies of the independent weekly.

Mbanga said copies of the 19 June 2008 edition of the newspapers had been flown into Harare by a commercial carrier for distribution last Thursday.

The publisher said the ZIMRA had told the local distributor that the order to impound the newspapers had come from the ruling Zanu PF party.

This comes hard on the heels of the burning of a truck containing 60 000 copies of the paper late last month. This comes at a time when Zimbabwe is preparing for an election run-off, from which the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has pulled out because of violence and intimidation.

"Election observers have been notified but no action has been taken so far," said Mbanga.

Meanwhile, Zimbabwe Police have charged a street vendor for listening to a special news programme on Zimbabwe broadcast by the Voice of America.

Noel Tichawana will appear in court on July 15 2008 to face charges of committing criminal nuisance after he was caught listening to the programme, Studio 7, a daily VoA programme that broadcasts political, economic and general news on Zimbabwe.

Tichawana faces up to six months in jail if found guilty.
Court papers say a soldier arrested Tichawana after having seen the vendor listening to Studio 7 on a radio set that he kept at his vending site.

"On several occasions, accused person would play his radio set at high volume attracting a crowd as he would switch it to America's Studio . . . informant then arrested the accused and brought him to St Mary's police station," reads the charge sheet submitted to court.
There are no independent broadcasters in Zimbabwe. The state-run Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) runs the country's only television and radio stations, while a government-appointed regulator has denied licences to